It's me – Pete….some of you know me as Mr. Sake as in “Oh For Pete’s Sake!”
Things have been a bit hectic around here so once again I'm here to fill in the blanks.
I think the last time Mrs. Sake had the chance to actually sit down to write about her trials was sometime in the early 1900's. No, we certainly are not that old and Al Gore wasn't even born yet so how could the internet even have possibly existed? You get the idea, hence there is a lot of subject matter that could be covered here but I intend to focus on just one - lucky for you.
As faithful followers you know that Mrs. Sake took on a new job with greater responsibility- probably more than she actually wanted but certainly not beyond her capabilities. This new position is a managerial position at a nursing home. She has invested her soul into proper care of our elderly population and her attention to details made her a perfect fit for the job.
Throughout the past six months she not only had to deal with a tremendous backlog of paperwork -which she promptly updated - but she improved the performance of her position to beyond that of any of her predecessors. The improvement has been so profound that all worries about anything having to do with her oversight are not questioned. There are no concerns - not by the director of nursing, not by the site administration, and not even by the corporate board.
This is where everything really begins to take shape. She is so efficient that the site administration regularly asks her to cover for other manager shortfalls no matter what they may be. Sometimes it is assisting other managers to complete their duties but usually she is asked to assist with staff scheduling errors. This is a polite way of saying they take advantage of her efficiency and "request" that she perform typical RN duties for the residents. This usually involves her staying hours beyond her normal shift.
Gripe #1: It is known that registered nurses command a good hourly pay rate, nurse managers are salaried employees. Therefore there is no additional compensation for the extra hours she puts in. Can you say…
It would be one thing if the additional time was a direct result of something she did not do in her titled position but this is not the case. Worst part is the managers directly responsible for needing her to perform the extra hours are clock-watchers and out of the building when their shifts are complete. Fair? NOT!!!
Gripe #2: On-call/Manager-on-duty weekends. This happens on a regularly scheduled rotation involving all the nurse managers. She has a employee schedule to look after and a company cell phone for staff to contact her directly in emergency - resident or staffing. I hate that cell phone so much that I almost took it for a swimming lesson in the creek behind our house on several occasions. One weekend that phone was ringing so often that she only got 4 hours sleep over 72 hours. That phone wakes me too and we both are on edge when it rings. She lost her Mother's Day weekend to that phone. And Father's Day weekend - you guessed it - we have that damn phone again. Yes I said "we". That phone affects all of us here at home.
Gripe #3: Dateline Monday thru Wednesday. Wife is awakened with my kiss at 530AM to begin her day. Shower, teeth brushed, makeup. Wake the Littles and get them ready - a task in itself. She reports to work at 8AM and works till 530PM- no lunch of course. Tuesday- same early routine, same report time. Only this time her work day extends to 7PM. Why? Because she is once again being taken advantage of and working the floor. Where are the other managers? GONE!!! Remember, for them it’s 5PM and out. Wednesday- same morning routine (either we are creatures of habit or slaves to society). Her workday starts as usual only this time there is a state inspector on site. Usually routine but not this time. A resident is losing weight at a questionable rate. The nurse managers are all over the facility making sure nothing is left undone. Then the fun begins. 530PM comes around and Mrs. Sake is asked to work 7PM to 4AM as a floor RN. Ironically I texted her prior to that saying if they asked her to work extra that day I would blow the roof off the place with the sheer volume of my voice. To my disdain she reluctantly agrees. Apparently the night was uneventful until 4AM. Where was the nurse coming on shift? 430? 5AM? 600AM and finally she shows up - 22 hours after Mrs. Sake's work day began. So that's three days and 41 work hours. Oh so kind was administration that they offered in advance that the misses could have Thursday off. Not good enough. Friday too or no overnight shift. They reluctantly agreed. Kicker- on Friday she needed to report in to pick up the On-call/Manager-on-duty phone and papers because it was her scheduled weekend.
This place has made my wife into something she is not….
Let’s all hope and pray my wife returns from this ordeal with her spirit still intact, her love of nursing still present, and oh yeah….no blood stains.
And this is how it has gone down…for real. I have 5 more days left
for them to use and abuse me at this place, and I cannot wait to be done. Not because of MY job, but because of all the EXTRAS. You know…”duties as assigned”?? Fuck that! From this point on “duties as assigned” better be written out for me or I am walking the other way!
When I start my new adventure, I will have several days where I will be able to blog, to spend time with my kids, clean the house, and maybe even cook dinner!! Imagine that!!
Give Mr. Sake a round of applause for summing up my first (and last) six months of employment at this facility. I am thankful he has been able to pick up that slack as I was
being held captive sorting out the mess that I got myself into with this new position!
Here’s to new adventures and leaving the past….well….in the past!!